28 November 2011

Turkeys for the table

A few weeks before Thanksgiving my mom called and said that my aunt wanted to make turkeys for Thanksgiving and would I get the supplies because they were flying in. A week and three stores later I had all of the supplies except the candy corn and confetti sprinkles, I consulted with my mom and we decided that she would bring the candy corn and the eyes would have to do without the confetti sprinkles.

Fast forward to Saturday and my other aunt tells me the turkeys are for the Thanksgiving table and that she had been told that I was making them! I had planned on getting some of the parts ready ahead of time, but then on Tuesday it hit me... I could use almond slices in place of the candy corn. A quick trip to Whole Foods and I was in business.

Step 1: Melt semi sweet chocolate chips in a plastic bag and pipe chocolate onto fudge stripe cookies. Attach almonds in wing pattern.

Step 2: Refrigerate to harden chocolate

Step 3: Make rice crispy treats and shape in to small balls (no picture as my hands were covered in butter)

Step 4: Pipe chocolate on backside of second cookie

Step 5: Attach turkey bodies

Step 6: Refrigerate to harden chocolate

Step 7: Pipe more chocolate on to both wing cookie and body cookie and attach

Step 8: Using chocolate attach head and feet
Step 9: Using a toothpick create chocolate eyes

Step 10: Gobble and enjoy

On the table

The adult table (I didn't make the cut)

27 November 2011

Turkey Trotting

Soon after my sister Beth bought her ticket to visit DC over Thanksgiving we started discussing the possibility of running a 5K Turkey Trot. I looked around and found one that ran right through downtown and across the mall. Soon we also had my dad signed on and we were trotting for hunger.

Nice long sleeve T

When we arrived it was a little chilly, but not too bad, we really lucked out with a beautiful morning. The 7000 other runners also helped block the wind. 

Beth and Dad in Freedom Plaza
I felt great the entire run. It took us three minutes to cross the starting line and had to do a lot of dodging the entire race. We lined up right at the 9 minute mile sign and still passed walkers for the first half mile. We lost each other right at the start, but Beth found me at mile two and we ran a half mile together and found each other soon after the finish. My goal for the race was to crack my 29:5 something time for a 5K. I'd been working a bit on my speed, but really didn't think a 28 was going to happen. Well I PR'd! My official time was 28:56, the 638th female to finish out of 2553 and the 270th of 918 females in my age division.

Our route, I only noticed the Capitol building,
I think I was too focused on not running into people

Visiting the first family after the run

13 November 2011

Muppets & Julia Child

On Sunday I also stopped by the American History museum to check out the Julia Child kitchen. I've been to the museum several times but I don't think I've ever seen the display, probably because its tucked in a corner of the basement surrounded by a bunch of kid science stuff.

But first I ran into these guys:

It's not easy being green

Next I thought I'd check out my best friends the first ladies, but... 

First ladies on the move
So on to Julia Child it was. I must admit other than a few PBS episodes in my childhood I didn't know much about Julia Child till I read the book Julie/Julia. Not only did half the book take place in my old Long Island City neighborhood, but it was also pretty enjoyable. The movie provided a bit more of a look into Julia's life and I was intrigued. Not so much about her cooking, but her working for the CIA and living all over and her can do attitude.

I absorbed the exhibit reading every sign (just like my dad taught me). 
She was one crazy (in a good way) lady.

She wasn't a Martha when it came to decorating

But very well organized (and I just spied the Skippy Peanut Butter I guess we have a few things in common) 

Autumn leaves and monuments

Today was a beautiful fall day in our Nation's Capital so I set out to visit the Museum of American History (more on this later) and to check out the new Martin Luther King memorial. Along the way I took lovely photos that incorporated two of my favorite things... autumn leaves and monuments.

The Washington Monument is pretty cool, I can see it from my apartment building which is also pretty cool

I think I've only visited Jefferson once, he just seems so far away

The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial is along the tidal basin across from the Jefferson Memorial, pretty nice spot. I heard a lot about how people were unhappy with the statue and that it didn't look like him. I must say in person I like it much more than in pictures. He doesn't look as angry in person, if that is possible. I didn't notice till I got home that his legs fad into the stone... I think it is just all around better in person, so go check it out!

"I have a dream"

I like the red leaves the best

Along the wall they had quotes from MLK. I watched the Republican debate on Foreign Policy last night and I wasn't very excited about some of the candidates responses about torture. When I read the quote below I thought of them.

From the side

From the back

11 November 2011

Happy 11/11/11 - Veterans Day

Today marks the first time I've ever had Veterans day off of work. Not sure I deserved it as I'm not a Veteran and I didn't hit up any ceremonies today. However I wanted to take advantage of the day so I slept in, ran 3 miles, and then headed to Georgetown to explore and do some shopping.

I was happy to see flags hanging around the neighborhood. If you haven't been to the Georgetown area I highly recommend visiting. Not only are there high end shops and cupcakes (the line for Georgetown cupcakes was a block long), but what I enjoyed the most was all the old houses and beautiful fall trees.

I took the bus over and was there in less than 10 minutes, but on the way back when I checked the bus arrival time I found I had 26 minutes to wait. So instead of waiting I started walking along the bus route thinking it would catch up with me and I would enjoy a nice walk along the way. I ended up walking 2 miles back to my apartment because the bus didn't catch up with me until I was a block and a half from my apartment and I didn't feel like just riding the final block. I guess I am a professional walker.

06 November 2011

The day I moved during a thunder snowstorm

I started working in DC a few weeks before I got my apartment and then worked another week before I returned to NYC to move all my possessions down to DC. I picked the specific weekend because I have a fabulous uncle and cousin who volunteered to help me move into my new apartment down in DC and being still October I figured the weather would be fine (or maybe I didn't even think about weather).

I had one week off and along with hosting two friends in NYC I managed to donate 7 bags of stuff to Goodwill, toss at least 10 bags of stuff, and pack up most of my apartment.  I didn't however pack anything in the kitchen, I had run out of boxes.

So last Friday I went in to work at 6:30 am so I could leave at 3 to catch a 3:30 Bolt Bus to NYC. The bus driver lady scolded me for not being their 15 minutes early, but let me on the bus.  I should of known what was up as she kept taking "short cuts" and got us lost and took a smoke break and got us in to NYC an hour and a half behind schedule.

When I finally got to my apartment at 10 pm I was tired, but determined to stay up till everything was packed. I knocked on my neighbor's door. She is like a good friend of the landlord and takes care of sorting the trash and keeping the hallways clean, etc. Anyway I asked her about my enormous amounts of trash I would be throwing out (including a lazy boy chair) and she offered to help me pack. I told her no like ten times but she insisted and I am so glad she did. Not only did she wrap and pack my whole kitchen, but she kept me going and not taking quick rests on the couch. We were done by 1am!

The next morning she knocked on my door with a cup of coffee, even though this was my first neighbor in four years in NYC that I said more than hello to I can no longer say that NYC neighbors ignore each other.

I decided to drive my stuff down to DC myself to save money (or as my Mom put it, because in our family you do things yourself). So the first leg of my trip involved me walking a mile and a half in freezing rain to the gas station that had the Uhaul truck.  I was soaking wet when I got there, but the rental went smooth and I was back to my apartment in no time.  I lived across the street from a fire station so the whole street is restricted parking, which made it easy for me to find an illegal spot to pull in to.  I never talked to the firemen, nothing more than a wave and a smile, but I wanted to make sure they weren't going to call a tow truck so I went over and asked if I could park there for a few hours. The fireman was everything you think of a NYC fireman.  Tall, dark, handsome, strong, and thick NYC accent. He was sad to see me move, but said of course I could park there.

Cold rain isn't the ideal moving condition, but the streets were still pretty safe at 10 when I got back to my apartment and the loaders were suppose to arrive, but by 11:40 when they did arrive the streets were covered by snow and it kept coming down.  They were friendly enough and had the truck loaded in a little over an hour.

I immediately hit the road and headed down through Brooklyn to the Verrazano bridge, which I went over for the first time ever, however I couldn't see anything because of the snow coming down.  Anything also includes the road signs, I made several great guesses on directions, but I did pull on to the cars only portion of the NJ Turnpike.

The great part of the blinding snow and slippery streets was there wasn't much traffic until I got to the first truck stop off the turnpike.  I was hungry and lucky for me the Uhaul only had a quarter tank when I picked it up. I guess everyone else was hungry and out of gas, because the rest stop was hopping.

Truck stops rule
After the rest stop I drove about 45 miles per an hour till I reached Delaware where the roads finally cleared up. The trip took about 2.5 extra hours, but at least it wasn't stop and go traffic.

The next day was beautiful and sunny and the Marine Corps Marathon (boy can I pick a good weekend). We mapped a route in and reached my apartment in no time. The unloading went smoothly save for my uncle and cousin having to carry my large bed up the stairs because it wouldn't fit in the elevator and having to drive to three Uhaul locations before being able to dump the truck.

With all of that it really was one of the least painful moves of my recent life.